Welcome to 2021! As we begin the second semester of the school year, following are some items for your consideration:
- No doubt the most important question of this most unusual school year has to do with when and under what conditions AEA will re-open our schools to traditional in-person learning. This item has been discussed at AEA Board of Trustees meetings as well as within our staff, student and parent communities. While AEA continues to operate under the restrictions of Phase II of the AEA Teaching and Learning Plan, because of the limited number of students attending in person, Phase II does not qualify as “reopened” under CA State requirements. In order to be deemed “reopened” we would need to have already offered in-person schooling to all students in at least one grade level AND have adjusted contagion rates (as per the San Diego County health authorities) of 25 or less per 100,000 residents. Given the mandated cohort model that we are using in Phase II (self-sustaining groups of no more than 14 students with no more than 2 adults), offering this option more broadly in either of our schools would have been logistically impossible in terms of staffing and allocation of classroom space. Additionally, the State has set different reopening criteria depending on grade levels. As of the writing of this post, the case rate stands at 60.6 per 100,000 residents. The vast majority of the districts and charter organizations in our county find themselves in a similar situation. This recent Voice of San Diego article paints a region-wide picture of the reopening challenges. All of the above means that for the foreseeable future we will continue in Phase II, with the majority of the teaching and learning taking place online. This topic will remain a regular item for discussion and consideration at the monthly AEA Board of Trustees meetings.
- In December, 2020 the San Diego Unified School District approved our petition for an AEA high school, with the first ninth grade entering in Fall, 2024. We are very excited about this development, as it is an important step in a years-long dream of many within the AEA community. We have created an AEA high school link from the AEA homepage to provide updates on our future school.
- Teachers are currently hard at work on student report cards for the first semester. Parents should keep an eye out for this information in the next two weeks or so.
- If you had chance to view the most recent AEA Board of Trustees meeting you would have seen a report that we have now distributed just under 100,000 meals to families within the AEA community since the start of the pandemic. This includes meal distribution over the recent three-week winter break. I am proud that we have been able to support our community in this way, and am thankful for the staff and volunteers who make the distribution possible. We are committed to continuing to address food insecurity within the community to the best of our abilities and available resources.
Stay safe and be well.